Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Holy Week Reflections

The dust is just beginning to settle on a full Holy Week. This year I was fortunate to be a part of the life of Duke Chapel for their Holy Week services. I helped serve in some capacity in all of them - Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil, and Easter Sunday. For me the highlight was the Good Friday service. Duke Chapel does a Service of Tenebrae for their Good Friday services. Near the end, several passages from the last moments of Christ's life were read, and after each reading the chapel gradually got darker and darker. I had the privilege of reading one of the Scriptures. After my reading, the chapel was completely dark, and then the chapel bell was rung 33 times to signify the 33 years of Christ's life. It was a wild feeling all around. First of all, to have your voice fill the space of Duke Chapel was pretty neat, and then to sit in complete darkness with 1200 people in that huge space was incredible. It is not something I will soon forget. You can watch a webcast of the Good Friday, and all Duke Chapel services, here.

One of the things I am learning is that different churches minister in different ways. Duke Chapel is a church that ministers in a number of ways, but the main way is simply through the building. Being in the beauty of that space definitely has the sense of holy ground, and it is not difficult to imagine the majesty and splendor of God while worshiping in that place. I will miss it when I am no longer a part of the Congregation at Duke Chapel.

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